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ERIC Number: ED049205
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1969
Pages: 157
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
A Comparison of the Oral and Written Styles of a Group of Inner-City Black Students.
Smitherman, Geneva
Concern during the past decade with educational failures of urban Negro children suggested the need for empirical evidence demonstrating whether or not students use identical grammatical and stylistic structures in both speech and writing. Fourteen black, inner city junior high students, all of whom speak "black English," were interviewed for about an hour. From each taped interview, 1,000 words were excerpted, while 1,000 words of classroom writing per student were selected for analysis. Data were subjected to a thorough analysis of style, comparing speech and writing, while 8,000 words were subjected to a grammatical analysis. Stylistically, results indicated significant differences between speech and writing (e.g., writing samples contained more adjectives and more subordinate clauses). Grammatically, results revealed oral and written differences in the use of black English patterns (e.g., speech samples evidenced a greater percentage of dialectal uses of "be"). It was concluded that black children do not speak as they write--their writing is characterized by greater sophistication and a closer adherence to standard grammar. (Author/JMC)
University Microfilms, A Xerox Company, Dissertation Copies Post Office Box 1764, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106 (Order No. 70-14,645, MFilm $4.00, Xerography $10.00)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Ph.D. Dissertation, The University of Michigan